We are accustomed to going out with physical money or credit cards to pay for our purchases, but have you ever thought how good it would be if we just walked with the phone in our pocket and better still pay for our daily purchases with him?
Today this is already possible, as this is one of the proposals of bitcoin, a virtual currency made with the purpose of giving security and ease in our transactions.
What is bitcoin?
Basically, bitcoin is a virtual currency with encryption to be networked. It is a totally decentralized currency, it can be stored like any other file on your computer, on your phone and even on a pendrive.
The bitcoin is not printed by the government or a bank, it works with its security protocol the blockchain, technology that aims to decentralize the currency as a security measure.
How it works?
As I said, bitcoin can be stored even on a USB stick. But to save bitcoin you need a wallet, which will give you access to a public key and a private key.
Your private key can be understood as a backup code it is through this code that you can "to handle" your bitcoins.
And the public key you share to be able to receive more bitcoins in the wallet.
When you make a transaction, the currency does not go out of one wallet and goes straight to another, before that, your transaction needs to be confirmed by the bitcoin miners. Bitcoin miners are computers that stay connected by performing calculations and intermediating transactions to ensure authenticity and prevent a person from spending the same coin more than once.
Summing up: When you send a certain amount of bitcoin or satoshis (bitcoin fraction), your coin goes to one block, which is mined and your transaction confirmed, and then goes to the other wallet.
How it came about
As far as the first appearance on bitcoin is known, it was on October 31, 2008 in a discussion group on cryptography, "The Cryptography Mailing" where a user with the pseudonym Satoshi Nakamoto made a post about his great invention, the "peer- to-peer electronic cash system, "Satoshi Nakamoto has attached a nine-page document describing the operation of bitcoin and its features.
How to get
There are several ways to get bitcoin, we have an article that speaks better about it → Entering the world of cryptocurrencies.
But in the more conventional ways, you can become a bitcoin miner and put your computer to mine the coin, something that is not so difficult, you will only need your computer, a stable internet connection and install a specific program for bitcoin mining.
The disadvantage of mining bitcoin is the high energy expenditure in view of the gain, a conventional computer will spend more energy than it will profit since it requires a lot of processing power of the machines to be able to gain something that is considered worthy.
There are companies specialized in the manufacture of mining machinery, these have a high can of processing. But they are expensive, which leads us to a second alternative, the purchase of bitcoin.
You can buy bitcoin in a house of exchange of criptomoedas like Poloniex, or through P2P, person to person.